HC Deb 10 May 1944 vol 399 cc1880-1
9. Mr. Viant

asked the Secretary of State for Air whether members of the R.A.F. who were in Malta during the bombing period are being returned to a home station provided they have been two years in that station.

The Secretary of State for Air (Sir Archibald Sinclair)

Yes, Sir. The hon. Member will, however, understand that the posting home of personnel who have completed their tour must be subject to the availability of shipping and the exigencies of the Service.

10. Sir J. Mellor

asked the Secretary of State for Air why ground personnel posted to Iceland before 1st May, 1943, are not allowed more than 14 days' disembarkation leave on return to England, seeing that they did not obtain 14 days' embarkation leave under the new rule before leaving England.

Sir A. Sinclair

R.A.F. personnel on return to the United Kingdom after a tour of duty in Iceland, which is normally of 12 months' duration, are usually granted 14 days' disembarkation leave. It is not the practice to increase this period where, owing to the needs of the Service, embarkation leave was not taken, and to do so in the case of the personnel referred to by my hon. Friend would involve preferential treatment for this category of airmen.

Sir J. Mellor

Do not these people lose both ways? Will my right hon. Friend say why local leave is banned in Iceland?

Sir A. Sinclair

That is another question, and perhaps my hon. Friend would put it on the Paper. I do not think they lose both ways. They have a shorter tour than most people who go overseas, and their tour of duty in Iceland, although it is only 12 months, is treated as a full tour of duty.